Thirteenth Step - A Perfect Circle
Thirteenth Step Image

Generally favorable reviews - based on 11 Critics What's this?

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Universal acclaim- based on 118 Ratings

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  • Summary: Tool vocalist Maynard James Keenan's side project returns with a second LP on which he's backed by Jeordie "Twiggy Ramirez" White (Marilyn Manson), Billy Howerdel (Tool's guitar tech) and Josh Freese (Guns N' Roses).
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 11
  2. Negative: 0 out of 11
  1. Once again, A Perfect Circle have quietly produced a masterpiece that challenges the very nature of testosterone-fueled angst. [Nov 2003, p.110]
  2. Thirteenth Step is the sound of a musical and lyrical maturity that normally doesn't occur until a band's third or fourth albums.
  3. Granted, Step doesn't have anything as effortlessly flawless as the classic single "Judith" from the band's last album, but it does have a number of songs ("Blue," "The Outsider") that are almost as bombastically beautiful.
  4. [The] band's winding, off-kilter rhythms and contrapuntal guitar riffs create an ominous atmosphere. [19 Sep 2003, p.86]
  5. 70
    With greater degrees of deliberate construction than Mers De Noms, Thirteenth Step is more cohesive band effort, less ad hoc side project. [Nov 2003, p.132]
  6. Sounds more like the dusky thrum of Disintegration-era Cure than it does any of the members' previous bands.
  7. 40
    This is a classic 1970s-style headphones record that is both arty and unusually undisciplined. [Nov 2003, p.108]

See all 11 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 70 out of 73
  2. Negative: 2 out of 73
  1. aggelosg
    Sep 24, 2003
    beautifully haunting and atmospheric. more radiohead than tool.keenan is the man.
  2. Oct 5, 2014
    This album is amazing. Every song has so much meaning and depth to it and they all sound and feel amazing. A Perfect Circle's best album completely...
  3. JackieP
    Oct 3, 2003
  4. AndruC
    Jul 7, 2004
    each of these talented musicians have brought a new perspective to the meaning of emotion for me personally. Such a small price to pay for such a deep atmospheric masterpiece, and for the last time...APC is NOT Maynards SIDE PROJECT, it is a creation which can be credited just as much as prior projects, discluding Tapeworm. Expand
  5. brankl
    Dec 26, 2006
    Very good album. Almost ties Mer De Noms but still not as good.
  6. EricY
    Sep 23, 2003
    Another fantastic album. The more I listen to it, the more I love it. How can you not? Maynard rules and so does this album.
  7. RickS
    Oct 16, 2003
    Well what can i say about Thirteenth Step, well for one, its generally dull, very boring and not at all what i expected.. Although i liked the first album(which wasn't that great but still good) I found that a perfect circle is somewhat trying too hard...Alot of the songs on thirteenth step are very weak, some songs come off as if they were trying to make the band a Mainstream TOOL, which for me(yes me) is repetitive and doesn't work.. The band itself is not really finding there style, songs like the outsider, weak and powerless, and gravity seem to have its own sound, but the rest of the album does not have a sense of uniqueness.... I really wanted to like this album(borrowing it from my friend countless times) but in the end i could only listen to prob 2 or 3 songs which i got tired of pretty off quickly, some songs were just too boring and somewhat annoying to listen through...The music doesn?t build like so many tool songs(yes i know there two different bands) and No i'm not tool freak.. While Maynard is very good on the vocal standpoint, the guitar riffs and bass was shallow, i did enjoy the work of the drums though.. Overall its like what Michael said " Between this album and Mer De Noms, you have one great album.. But I think its listen -able AT BEST Expand

See all 73 User Reviews